Half-Day Private Trip to Rundale Palace and Bauska castle

Private & Custom Tours in Rīga

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Tour description provided by Viator

History comes alive with this full-day visit of famous castles and palaces. You'll be able to visit such landmarks as Rundale palace and Bauska castle
ItineraryThis is a typical itinerary for this productStop At: Bauska Castle, Bauska, Zemgale RegionVisit of medieval 15th century Bauska castle museum and surroundings. Construction started under the rule of the Master of the Livonian Order, Heidenreich Vinke von Overberg (1439 – 1450). The castle was intended to strengthen the Order's power over Semigallia, to protect the border with the Grand Duchy of Lithuania and to control the trade route from Lithuania to Riga. The castle was both the military stronghold and the administrative centre of the area.After the collapse of the Livonian Order in 1562, Bauska Castle became one of the residences of the Dukes of Courland, for whom a new adjacent wing was built in the 17th century. In 1568, 1590 and 1601 the Landtags of Duchy of Courland and Semigallia were held here.In 1706, during the Great Northern War, both castle and palace were blown up by the retreating Russians and left unrestored.Only ruins remain today from the seat of the Livonian order. The palace, however, is fully restored and can be visited daily during the summer months. Visitors can explore the castle, visit the museum, and climb the castle keep lookout tower, which has a panoramic view of the surrounding city and countryside.Duration: 45 minutesStop At: Rundale Palace Museum (Rundales Pils), Pilsrundale, Zemgale RegionVisit of Rundale Palace museum and garden. In 1735 Duke of Courland Ernst Johann von Biron bought land in Rundāle with an old medieval castle in the territory of a planned summer residence. The old castle was demolished and construction after the design of Bartolomeo Rastrelli started in 1736. Under the supervision of Rastrelli its construction was finished in 1768. Johann Michael Graff produced lavish stucco decorations for the palace during this time. Ernst Johann von Biron loved the palace and moved there already in 1768. He often visited palace and spent summers there until his death in 1772. After Duchy of Courland and Semigallia was absorbed by the Russian Empire in 1795, Catherine the Great presented the palace to Count Valerian Zubov, the youngest brother of her lover, Prince Platon Zubov. He spent his declining years there after the death of Valerian Zubov in 1804.After the German occupation in World War I when the German army established a hospital and a commandant's office there. During the French invasion of Russia in 1812, the palace was used as a hospital for Napoleon's army. At the end of the 19th century, the palace and park were restored and reconstructed.The palace is major tourist destination in Latvia. It is also used for the accommodation of notable guests, such as the leaders of foreign nations. The palace and the surrounding gardens are now a museum.Duration: 2 hours

What’s included

  • English speaking driver
  • Hotel pickup and drop-off
  • Private trip
  • Transport by air-conditioned minivan

What’s not included

  • Food and drinks
  • Gratuities
  • Museum entrances
  • Entry/Admission - Bauska Castle
  • Entry/Admission - Rundale Palace Museum (Rundales Pils)
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